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AVS Sony PS3 FAQ (PS3 used as a Blu-ray player)  

post #1 of 693
Thread Starter 
[Moderator note: Here's a link to PS3 BD player discussion thread: http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=650544 This PS3 as a BD player guide/FAQ will supersede post #1 in the previous link. Please help Steve with new info and only use this thread for contributions or corrections. PS3 talk should go in the linked thread. Thanks.]

The PS3 is a very complex media device, with many many options. It can be daunting to try to comprehend all the video and audio options available, and it can be daunting to approach the multi-thousand post PS3 thread as a new or potential PS3 user. This FAQ is intended to guide the new user through the baptism process. The key word is guide: you need to do some of the work yourself.

How do I turn the PS3 on?

OK, that one doesn't get asked very often. But the number one piece of information we can give you is RTFM. Start here, with the Online Playstation 3 Manual. It's a very clear walkthrough of the available video and audio settings.

After reading that, ask away in the main PS3 thread. But please don't ask "what does the Cross Color Reduction Filter do? RTFM.

What is the difference between the 40GB and 80GB models?

As a PS3 game machine and Blu-ray player: none. The 40GB lacks PS2 backwards compatibility, SACD playback, and has two rather than four USB ports. The 80GB has a memory card reader.

http://www.us.playstation.com/PS3/Ab...b&LCTN=LP_40GB

I have a widescreen TV but I still see black bars on some movies.

This one is easy to understand. Really. Movies are rectangular, and they come in a lot of different size rectangles (aspect ratios). If the movie rectangle isn't the same proportions as your TV's rectangle, it won't fill the screen unless you distort it by stretching it vertically or horizontally. This article by Joshua Zyber explains it pretty well:

http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/764

How do I check my firmware version?

On the PS3 XMB, choose Settings, System Settings, System Information. The current version is 2.1.

How do I update my firmware?

The simplest way is to connect your PS3 to the internet. Then, from the XMB, choose Settings, System Settings, Update via Internet.

If you don't have a network connection, you'll need to download the update and copy it to a USB memory stick or a memory card if your PS3 model has a memory card reader. Get the update and instructions here.


AUDIO SETTINGS
**************************************************

What audio codecs does the PS3 support? Should I use Bitstream or LPCM?



In a nutshell: Use Bitstream with an optical connection, LPCM with HDMI.

The PS3 will not bitstream advanced audio formats to your receiver. It will not send advanced multi-channel formats over optical. It will decode all but DTS-HD and convert them to LPCM and pass that to your receiver via HDMI. It is rumored that DTS-HD MA support will be added in a future firmware update. In the interim, a 1.5mbps DTS track will be extracted from the DTS-HD MA source over optical or HDMI.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris0 View Post

For those still a bit confused by all the audio stuff here are two links that should help.

This one explains the difference between decoding in the player (sending it PCM) or in the receiver (HBR bitstreaming, which the PS3 can't do.)
http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/853
The relevant part is about halfway down under "New HD Lossless Audio Formats."

This one explains all the different codecs. It's a long read but a good one.
http://www.highdefdigest.com/news/show/1064

Does the PS3 play CD's?

Yes, and it upconverts them to up to 176.4 KHz with selectable digital filters.

Does the PS3 play SACD's?

Yes, except the 40 GB Model. You need HDMI to get the best sound and multi channel play. The optical and analog outputs give you 2 channel sound, but only 44.1 KHz over optical.

See this PS3 SACD FAQ

Does the PS3 have analog outs?

No. Well, there is stereo analog out from the AV Connector.

**************************************************

VIDEO SETTINGS
**************************************************

Under Video Output Format (HDMI), what are RGB, Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr and Auto for?

RGB: A colorspace used by the PS3 to output video levels at a desired range. This colorspace is mostly designed for PC monitors. This is the desired colorspace for use in the PS3’s XMB interface and also for video games because they are encoded in sRGB.

Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr: Another colorspace for use with displays that accept Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr input. If your display supports it, this is the desired colorspace when watching DVD, Blu-rays or AVCHD videos.

Auto: Just like it sounds, it automatically selects between RGB or Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr colorspaces depending on the source of the video. Selecting “Auto” will most likely result in the PS3 using RGB Levels for the XMB interface and Video Games, and Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr for DVD and Blu-ray discs.
Which one should I choose?

That depends on your display, connection and calibration settings. Try using starting with “Auto” (see why above under “Auto” above).

I notice weird things happening with colors when selecting Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr or Auto. What should I do?

Try forcing the PS3 to output RGB levels to see if this eliminates the problems. Your display may not accept, or may have trouble with Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr input.

Does it matter if I'm using component cables?

TBD

So then under Display Settings, should I have RGB set to “Full” or “Limited”?

Most TVs can experience “black crush” when “Full” is selected because the colorspace is being mapped beyond what the TV is expecting. Start with it set at “Limited” and calibrate your TV accordingly. Use grey-scale test pattern images if necessary during calibration.

See this discussion for a more detailed discussion (for and against)

What about Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr Super-White? “On” or “Off”?

Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr Super-white is used to pass Blacker-than-Black (BTB) and Peak White (WTW) levels during video playback. Setting this to “On” should benefit your display as long as your TV accepts Y Pb/Cb Pr/Cr input over HDMI. Again, try using a test pattern DVD/BD to calibrate your display after this is turned on.

Not all displays are alike, so use common sense. If you notice a decrease in picture quality after changing any of the above settings either try recalibrating the TV or revert back to the previous setting.

How does the video compare to standalone players?

Most users think the PS3 is in the top tier of upconverting players, falling somewhat below only those with high quality dedicated chips like the Toshiba XA2.

Link to be added.

How good is the DVD upconverting?

PS3, Upconversion and Blu-ray

**************************************************

What are the differences between Blu-ray Profile 1.0, 1.1, and 2.0?

Blu-ray profiles explained in detail

Is the PS3 Profile 1.1 compatible?

Yes.

Is the PS3 Profile 2.0 compatible?

Not yet, but Sony has announced that it will be, via a firmware update.

Can I use my Harmony remote with the PS3?

Only if you use a USB IR adaptor:

http://www.nyko.com/nyko/products/?i=113
http://www.schmartz.com/main.sc

How do I use the controller as a remote?





What's the best way to connect my receiver and display?

If your receiver has HDMI inputs and outputs, connect your PS3 to your receiver with an HDMI cable, and connect your receiver to your display with HDMI.

If your receiver only has optical inputs, connect your PS3 to your receiver with an optical cable, and connect your PS3 to your display with HDMI. If your display doesn't have HDMI, you'll need to purchase the PS3 component AV cable. If your display doesn't have component, I'm sorry for you.

Can the PS3 output video over component while simultaneously outputting audio over an HDMI connection?

Yes, and other combinations, like video over HDMI and audio over optical, are supported.

Can the PS3 output audio over HDMI and Optical at the same time?

No, only one audio output at a time.

Where can I get a good deal on the PS3?

Generally the PS3 sells for full list price. Occasionally there are some bonuses, such as adding on a free Sony remote. If you apply for a SonyStyle credit card here you can get a $100 credit on a PS3 purchase directly from Sony.

Should I buy the PS3 or the xxxxx?

Sorry, you're going to have to make up your own mind on that one. You might want to take a look at the Help a guy choose a Blu-ray player thread for some opinions.

How do I stream content to the PS3?

Apple: http://www.nullriver.com/index/products/medialink

Windows Media Player 11: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/win...a/default.mspx

TVersity: http://www.tversity.com

How do I configure the WiFi?

If your WiFi is unprotected, just go to Settings-> Network Settings -> Internet Connection and choose Easy. If it's protected, choose Custom and you'll be prompted for the SSID and the security key, which you'll need to get from your router's configuration page.

What is Folding@Home?

Folding@Home is a distributed computing project for scientific inquiry into protein folding as related to disease. You can donate time on your PS3, as a member of the avsforum team, no less. You can set a timer to shut off the PS3 after running for a specified period or when the next work unit (WU) is done. You'll need an internet connection to download WU's and folding software updates.

See folding@home web site.

I think the PS3 is ugly

Sorry, that's not a question.

Thanks to chris0, geko29, CasualViewer, bplewis24, joeblow, Rich Davenport, 30XS955 User, BigScreen, splinters.
post #2 of 693
Thread Starter 
I thought this might reduce some of the repetitive questions in the main thread and help out new users.

Please post any additions or corrections here and I'll update the first post.
post #3 of 693
Thanks for putting in the time for this.
post #4 of 693
Nice post, but it needs to be in the official PS3 thread so it doesn't get lost.
post #5 of 693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Donnie Eldridge View Post

Nice post, but it needs to be in the official PS3 thread so it doesn't get lost.

I think it would get lost in that thread.
post #6 of 693
If someone can answer this for me I'd appreciate it.

What is the PS3 doing to 7.1 signals in a 5.1 set up?

Ex. I'm watching Weeds Season 2. It has a 7.1 Uncompressed PCM soundtrack. I start an episode and hit display. It says PCM 7.1. I am using a 5.1.

Am I losing 2 channels of information? Is the PS3 remixing the 4 rears into 2 channels?

I watched Pan's Labyrinth which has a 7.1 DTS-MA track. I hit display during that and it says DTS @ 1.5 MB 5.1. So in this case it is pulling the "Core".

7.1 PCM... I'm confused.
post #7 of 693
Does anyone know if I can default all of my BDs to play the PCM track instead of DD?
post #8 of 693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr_Kn0w View Post

Does anyone know if I can default all of my BDs to play the PCM track instead of DD?

I'm pretty sure you cannot. I think it is authored in the discs as to what it defaults to. I wish it could communicate with your equipment and always select best available.
post #9 of 693
Thread Starter 
I didn't intend for this to just become a clone of the other thread. With a group effort we could come up with some definitive answers on the most common questions, and maybe this could become a locked sticky.

Or, if we get Grubert involved, maybe the first post of the mondo thread could be updated with a more comprehensive new user FAQ. It's well done but it was written way back when and doesn't really address the most common thread questions.
post #10 of 693
Sorry about the noob question:

I recently moved my PS3 (60GB) from my bedroom to the livingroom, to replace a Samsung BD-P1200 which was having all sorts of issues playing back a few newer releases.

I have my Internet (cable) connection in the bedroom, so I had my PS3 connected to the Modem/Router, via the Ethernet wire. I do not have any Modem in the family room, but I do have wireless throughout the house.

The question is this: is there any kind of wireless device which I may connect to the PS3 to get any updates via the Internet and get all the Internet benefits, instead of having to move it around all the time to get updates via the Modem?.

Again, I am sorry for such an uninformed question, but I have not had the time (an acronym for laziness ) to read the manual. TIA
post #11 of 693
Thread Starter 
The PS3 has wifi. Just go in to Settings -> Internet Settings, choose Easy and WiFi. If your router is set for DHCP (most are) it will connect with no further effort on your part.
post #12 of 693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post

The PS3 has wifi. Just go in to Settings -> Internet Settings, choose Easy and WiFi. If your router is set for DHCP (most are) it will connect with no further effort on your part.

Now I feel like a real idiot savant

I just have a secured network, so I think all i have to do is to do as you have suggested and then enter my access code by using the Bluetooth remote, right?.
post #13 of 693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post

Dolby Digital, DTS, uncompressed PCM via optical, Dolby Digital, DTS, Dolby TrueHD, and uncompressed PCM via HDMI.


I've only had my PS3 for about 10 days now (and I LOVE it ), but I was under the impression that it also would decode Dolby Digital Plus. Is that not true?
post #14 of 693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post

I didn't intend for this to just become a clone of the other thread. With a group effort we could come up with some definitive answers on the most common questions, and maybe this could become a locked sticky.

Or, if we get Grubert involved, maybe the first post of the mondo thread could be updated with a more comprehensive new user FAQ. It's well done but it was written way back when and doesn't really address the most common thread questions.

Personally Steve even though you did a really great job putting this together for all of the new PS3 owners having someone add this to the PS3 sticky to update the first page with this sort of information it would be so much easier to direct people there for their general questions should they have any which I am sure they will.
post #15 of 693
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEJHarrison View Post

I've only had my PS3 for about 10 days now (and I LOVE it ), but I was under the impression that it also would decode Dolby Digital Plus. Is that not true?


I added it to the first post. Thanks!

I would sure love to see a simple grid of audio codecs and the two connectors. Like this:

Code:
                      Optical              HDMI
DD                      DD                  DD
DTS                    DD                  DD
LPCM                  2CH                 LPCM
TrueHD              DTS1.5              LPCM
DD+                   DD                   LPCM
Any volunteers?
post #16 of 693
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by JCR1960 View Post

Personally Steve even though you did a really great job putting this together for all of the new PS3 owners having someone add this to the PS3 sticky to update the first page with this sort of information it would be so much easier to direct people there for their general questions should they have any which I am sure they will.

I agree. It would be nice to just say - "Read the first post!".
post #17 of 693
Steve, I sent you a PM.
post #18 of 693
When you decode a audio codec and send it through PCM do you lose any quality? there is a ps3 open box in my city that im eyeing if it survives the weekend\\....
post #19 of 693
Nice!!

NEED TO MAKE THIS A STICKY----STICKY---STICKY
post #20 of 693
Nice job. One clarification, however. The PS3 can't currently decode DTS-HD HR either. It's used VERY infrequently, but IS a different codec than DTS-HD MA, and lack of support for one does not necessarily imply lack of support for the other.
post #21 of 693
Actually the PS3 has stereo analog out using the adapter that comes in the box for composite video. Also, I have seen in the stores a component video adapter.
post #22 of 693
Steve, I found a pretty good FAQ page offsite. It has what looks to be an accurate table of audio formats (the Audio Compatibility chart) if you want to somehow incorporate that here. I don't think you can just take it but you could use it for "inspiration."
http://www.edepot.com/playstation3.html
post #23 of 693
Thread Starter 
Thanks Chris!

This is the topic that is most needed. I'll work on a table of audio formats with the PS3 results over optical and HDMI, with bitstream or LPCM selected. Hopefully that will help people out.
post #24 of 693
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Schauer View Post


I think the PS3 is ugly

Sorry, that's not a question.

lol, nice touch.

Anyway, thanks for starting this thread. It's been needed for a long time. I'm definitely going to be pointing people to this thread when some of the more repetitive questions are asked in the other thread.

I'd like for you to add some video questions to the first post, if you will.

People often don't know what to select for BD Video Output settings (RGB, automatic or Y Pr/Cr Pb/Cb). Also the settings for RGB and Y Pr/Cr Pb/Cb (full/limited for RGB and Superwhite on or off for the latter). There's no 100% full proof answer for every person's equipment, but some basic info would be useful I think. I can try and compile some of the more general information I've come to understand if you like.

Brandon
post #25 of 693
Wow, it's about time. The DTS MA thing, noise, aesthetics, was getting very old!
post #26 of 693
- In the 40 GB vs. 80 GB question, you may want to add that you can buy a USB memory card reader separately for the 40GB unit, but there is no current way to add PS2 compatibility to it.

- Stupid Disney switched around the buttons during Blu-ray playback on their movies. When you FF or rewind, you have to press START on the PS3 controller to play, not 'X'.

- Also, here is a good thread on the PS3's upconverting abilities.
post #27 of 693
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bplewis24 View Post

lol, nice touch.

Anyway, thanks for starting this thread. It's been needed for a long time. I'm definitely going to be pointing people to this thread when some of the more repetitive questions are asked in the other thread.

I'd like for you to add some video questions to the first post, if you will.

People often don't know what to select for BD Video Output settings (RGB, automatic or Y Pr/Cr Pb/Cb). Also the settings for RGB and Y Pr/Cr Pb/Cb (full/limited for RGB and Superwhite on or off for the latter). There's no 100% full proof answer for every person's equipment, but some basic info would be useful I think. I can try and compile some of the more general information I've come to understand if you like.

Brandon

Thanks Brandon! Yes, please send me a video settings tutorial by PM or post it here.
post #28 of 693
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by joeblow View Post

- In the 40 GB vs. 80 GB question, you may want to add that you can buy a USB memory card reader separately for the 40GB unit, but there is no current way to add PS2 compatibility to it.

- Stupid Disney switched around the buttons during Blu-ray playback on their movies. When you FF or rewind, you have to press START on the PS3 controller to play, not 'X'.

- Also, here is a good thread on the PS3's upconverting abilities.

That is really annoying that the Play/Pause buttons aren't consistent! Breaking UI rules is a cardinal sin.

I added your link to the upconversion thread. Thanks!
post #29 of 693
How's this for an addition:

Does the PS3 play CD's?

Yes, and it upconverts them to up to 176.4 KHz with selectable digital filters.

Does the PS3 play SACD's?

Yes, except the 40 GB Model. You need HDMI to get the best sound and multi channel play. The optical and analog outputs give you 2 channel sound, but only 44.1 KHz over optical.

See this PS3 SACD FAQ:
post #30 of 693
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rich Davenport View Post

How's this for an addition:

Does the PS3 play CD's?

Yes, and it upconverts them to up to 176.4 KHz with selectable digital filters.

Does the PS3 play SACD's?

Yes, except the 40 GB Model. You need HDMI to get the best sound and multi channel play. The optical and analog outputs give you 2 channel sound, but only 44.1 KHz over optical.

See this PS3 SACD FAQ:

Added. Thanks!

Note: I'll be adding credits for all the contributors to the FAQ soon.
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